FEBRUARY 1911 - HIRAM PRATT DIARY
Note: These diaries were in the Waveland Public Library for decades but were disposed of by a librarian several decades ago. Luckily, another librarian's daughter (thanks sooo much Pam, at the death of her mother, Virginia Banta Sharpe found them in some belongings and gave them back for proper housing. A complete circle; however, only 14 of the 50+ diaries were saved from the library's incinerator. I'm a librarian too and thought since they'd been lost to posterity for so many years that it would be a good thing to transcribe them and give them to the world. They are currently housed in proper temperature/storage at the Crawfordsville District Public Library - typed as they were written
Note 2 : Karen Bazzani Zach (transcriber) was raised in the big 'ol town (500 people) where HA Pratt lived 5 decades before I was born. I remember the building where his little shop was and wish it was still there. What an interesting little place. ALAS! Progress ! Oh, and I've tried to type the diaries as is - mistakes & all
Note 3: Some information about Pratt -- he was born in Parke County, Indiana April 20, 1840 the oldest child of eight born to Erastus & Elizabeth Allen Pratt and died October 12, 1914 in his beloved Waveland, Indiana. He was twice married, first to the love of his life (he kept a life-sized poster of her in one of his cabinets at his barber shop, even long after his second marriage) Eliza Franklin Shaw (born Oct 23, 1841 died Oct 12, 1887), and #2 to his friend, Evaline "Eva" McMains. He was very active in the community where he and Eliza chose to live. He gave generously of his time and money to the Methodist Church in Waveland. For a few years, he served as Marshall of the town. Also, he worked diligently for his Odd Fellows, Rebekah & Knights of Phythias Lodges, was for a time on the town board, and read to those who could not read from the several newspapers he was agent for. Pratt volunteered and served for three years during the Civil War (Co. B, 36th Infantry), and spent time in the dreaded Andersonville prison. He and Eliza adopted a son, Willie Franklin Stump, age two (not sure ever officially or just had permission to take him from the Poor House in Crawfordsville) and he was an amazing young boy (high grades, worked in the church, quite musicially inclined, just an ideal child) until Eliza was taken to the hospital where she was operated on for six cervical tumors (one weighing six pounds) from which she died. Willie went wild after that and he and Hiram's second wife, Eva never got along. He ended-up in Reform School (for stealing a dollar twice from Eva among other small crimes), and later sent home to die due to consumption (what we know as tuberculosis) dying in Hiram's arms on April 12, in 1894. Hiram missed Willie and Eliza more than most I do believe as he wrote about them so often in these diaries. Just wish the rest of Pratt's diaries he wrote for over 50 years as a barber in Waveland still existed :( kbz -- ENJOY
On front of this diary is a piece of paper glued that says, "Waveland Ind HA Pratt, Diary for the year of 1911.
Inside there is a page to fill out that says "Remembrancer"
Name: HA Pratt
Reisdence Waveland PO BOX Ind. Telephone NO 24-6. Business Address Cross Street Telephone no. 6.
Laundry Mark - HA Pratt
Size of Hat - 7 ½
Other things are not filled out
Life Ins Policy Union Mutual of Maine at Portland
In case of accident notify Mrs. SE Pratt
Wednesday Feb 1 - Clear most of the day. 45. $1.30. I did not go to meeting tonight. James McCoy of Crawfordsville called long enough to say howdy. He brought a man down to look at his wife's property with a view of buying. Ethel McMains, Buddy Kelso and wife were at our house for dinner. Ethel has a bad cold and was taken to our house sick. Her parents are not home since last Saturday. It was after 10 tonight when I finished my last customer.
Thursday Feb 2 - Cloudy after the early morning 31. $1.50. I attended the meeting at 3 this afternoon. Had a real good one. Tonight I heard brother Jones. He made an earnest appeal to sinners take a brave stand for the enlistment in the army of the Lord. Not a soul made a move. I felt sorry for Bro Jones for he plead so sweetly and so earnestly to make the unconcerned become interested in their own souls salvation. Ethel is at our house, she is yet a sick child. Paid 35 c for milk $1.05 express on the laundry for 3 weeks,
Friday Feb 3. - Cloudy rain and snow 37. $1.75. Butter 25 c postal cards 5c. soap 25 c This day was Bob Kelso's birthday. It was half past 8 when I was done my work consequently I never heard the sermon tonight. Bro. Howard came in yesterday evening and will preach tomorrow night and 3 times on Sunday. It will be my delight to attend the services. Ethel went to her work this morning and home for dinner. Budd Clore and wife returned last Wednesday.
Saturday Feb 4 - Cloudy most of the day. 32. $6.25 Paid 25 c for 3 bars of Seymour ? Soap (Saymons?) for toilet purposes. The governor has signed the bill repealing the county load county option bill. Saloons are now permitted anywhere in the state where people do not remonstrate. Township ward or city being a unit. The meeting was well attended tonight. Bro Fertich will preach tomorrow morning. Bro Howard in the afternoon and at night.
Sunday Feb 5 - Cloudy snow and rain. 33 I went to hear Brother Fertich this morning. Brow Howard talked to men only this afternoon. I heard him. He had a good message. Blessed holy man of God a great blessing in any community. He preaches that men everywhere should praise God for a pure heart. That we ought t o live holy the Lord's Brother Fertich is ready to support him with an Amen to every inspiration. I look for more eloquent and flaming sermons by Bro F.
Monday Feb 6 - Cloudy 35. Snow melted some. $.80. Paid 50 for a hatchet I now have one here in the shop and at home. I went to hear Bro Howard tonight. His talk was on the right line had the true ring of holiness and the word holiness was not mentioned. Bro Howard does not believe in Christian Sinners. There will be a funeral service in the ME C house tomorrow afternoon. A man from Ladoga will preach it. He is a Presbyterian minister.
Tuesday Feb 7 - Cloudy all day - 27. the moon could be seen tonight. $1.15 Paid John Tague a dollar for fresh pork - back bones and ribs. Paid 40 c for laundry work. A dollar to Albert Wright for distributing the news sent the News a check for $16.25 for dues on last months run of papers. I was out to the meeting tonight. Brother Howard gave us a good sermon. There was a funeral service held in the meeting house today and another one announced for tomorrow.
Wednesday Feb 8 - Cloudy 32. $1.50. Paid John Tague a dollar for 14 pounds of backbone and ribs. He killed hogs today. I was out to meeting tonight. There was a good size congregation out to hear Bro Jones for some cause he did not put in his appears. Bro Howard felt very much embarrassed. He believes the people had come out to hear Bro Jones and he felt his inability to fill his place to the satisfaction of those present. The sugar camp are not yet in full flow.
Thursday Feb 9 - Cloudy with little sun shine. 27. $1- paid 15 c for a can of Lipincott brand of Apple butter. T his brand is a splendid butter. Bob McMains took supper at our house this evening. He says Anderson at his sale sold his two mares $395. The brown brought 206 dollars the other one $189. His entire sale footed up over $800. He has began repairs on the big brick. The meeting tonight was well attended and good attention was given. No one was ready to turn from sin.
Friday, Feb 10 -- $3.50. Cloudy 23. Early this morning the mercury registered 13. Signs of a thaw was observed in favorable spots favorable to the hidden rays of the sun. Eva called on Mrs. Manda Bloomfield this afternoon. She also attended the meeting tonight. I never knew that she had any notion in that direction or that she was in the house until I passed the basket for a collection. Bro James preached a wonderfull good sermon and the last was we'll hear from him. They return home in the morning.
Saturday Feb 11 -- $7.05. Cloudy and cold all day. 26. At 7 this morning 23 degrees were registered. Paid $1.35 for 25 lbs of granulated sugar - 90 c for three brooms. A man came into town with a wagon load and sold them all in a very short time. I bought 3 in the store we would have had to pay 50c each. I was done working 10 oo'clock but did not get home until 11. I write this as though I were already home, but hope to be there by that time. Bro. Fertich preached tonight. Two joined the church
Sunday Feb 12 -- Cloudy and damp all day. 44. This date in October 1887 my sweet little woman passed from among us to the home of the soul, not made with hands eternal in the heavens. Her body is mouldering back to dust in the "Old Fletcher Cemetery near Farmersburg, Sulivan (sic - Sullivan) County, Ind. The same date in March 1897 our foster son Willie F. Pratt passed away and his body lies in the Methodist cemetery in Waveland, Ind. I heard Bro Fertich twice today. The meetings closed until 10 additions. Herbert Lewis and wife and son dined with us.
Monday Feb 13 - Cloudy the entire day. 44. $2.35. Paid 42.80 dues in the IOOF order, this puts me in good standing. I had lost out on the last quarter. Paid Albert Wright $1. 15c for repairs on the harness $3.25 for coal and 35. Express on the return of laundry. The days are getting longer, easily to be noticed. I can eat supper now before sundown. 25 c for a pound of butter and 25c for 10 milk tickets. The committee on pensions in the Senate have reported favorable on the bill cutting off 6 dollars on the 75 years 30.
Tuesday Feb 14 - Cloudy. The sun could be seen. 54. $1.65 through the cloud. Paid 40c to Mrs. Moore 15 c to John Holland for a whisk broom. John Teague little girl brought me a gallon tin basket of sugar water. I was glad to get it. I gave her a copy of "Uncle Tom's Cabin" to read. Maple molasses of this years making is on the market at $1.25. a gallon. I can get last years make for 85 cts and just as good. The Mercury was up rather too high today a few days like this would be dangerous to the small fruit. This would be too bad.
Wednesday Feb 15 - Clear most of the time during the day. 54. $1.70. I put in the bank of Waveland today $5.2_ (?) John Holland is going to move his goods back into the room he moved out of a few years ago. He will not have half the floor space in this room as of the room he vacates. Ethel McMains will remain with him for awhile. The News has not yet sent me the Last Edition, have promised to comply with my request in a few days. Prof. HS Kritz is 86 today and in the best of health. I am as well as common.
Thursday Feb 16 -- .80. Clear until late in the morning rain began to fall by 10 o'clock and most of the remainder of the day was rather wet. 57. Bob McMains was at our house for dinner. Paid 50 cents for a pair of suspenders. Eva spent the evening at Marion Collings. She came as I did after supper and if I don't remain up town too long. She will return home as I do. The fire is out in our hard coal stove. The weather is too warm.
Friday Feb 17 -- $2.05. Cloudy all day long. Paid $1.65 for shop supplies and a dollar and 35 cents to Holland for groceries including a 24 pound sack of Calleflour ? Eva (or Calla bitle flour - seems like cauliflower but there are too many letters) sold her Bro Bob 2 dozzen of eggs for 25 cents. We can't buy anything cheaper to use as meat, as eggs. Bob took dinner and supper with us today. He has been putting up some grave markers for the Chalmness family over at Old Union Cemetery. Not cold enough yet to rebuild a fire of hard coal.
Saturday Feb 18 -- $5.10. 37. Paid 35c Express on the return of the laundry. 15 c for repair on breast pin for Eva. 10c for a bowl of milk and bread. 55 c for 3 pound of boiled ham pressed. I was done work by 11 o'clock. I started a fire in the hard coal burner this morning. The weather got rather cool to sit in with no fire. I think I will have plenty of coal to run until the cold season is over.
Sunday Feb 19 - 34. Cloudy and snowed a very little late this evening the ground was completely covered. I went to hear Bro Wm. Smythe at 11 o'clock - also tonight. He read his sermons and that to me does not sound like preaching, yet the thoughts were his and of course were original. When he gets older and gets more practice he will be apt to use less manuscript. I am willing to own up that he done much better than I could do. Eva was at home all day.
Monday Feb 20 -- $.60. 25. A very little snow fell today. Paid $2.10 Rent on two telephones one at the home and one here in the shop. Paid Albert Wright a dollar. Paid John Holland 50 c for 4 pounds of Mecer (Meuer?) peaches. Mrs. Emma Hannon of Indianapolis and Mrs. Sarah Ellen McMains were at our house until bed time. Marion Collings has opened up a harness and repair shop in the room south 2 doors from my shop. Cold tonight.
Tuesday Feb 21 -- $2.35. Thermometer 22. The weather has been a reminder of real winter. The mercury has been below the freezing point all day. Paid 25 c for a can of apple butter. 10 c for a can of apple butter. 10c for 4 pieces of pickled pigs feet. Bob McMains eat supper with us tonight. He will remain over the night with us. He has at last made a deal with the firm Milligan heirs for a Tombstone 10 years ago he began on the job. (this makes no sense to me but what it says).
Wednesday Feb 22 -- $.80. 30 degrees. The sun shone a little while this afternoon. Mrs. Alice Hunt of Rolling Prairie or Prarie was with us for supper. She was once a resident of this place. She is Earl Moore's mother. Paid Mrs. Moore 40c for the washing of our cast off cloths of last week. 25 cts for 6 bread tickets. Received my receipt for Life Insurance of $5.47 paid out last Friday. Bob McMains eat dinner at our house today.
Thursday Feb 23 - Clear most of the day 36. $.80. John Holland has been bussy all day moving the goods from the old store room to the one newly fitted up. It will not be completed. The transfer this week. Paid 25 c for 6 beautiful apples. Washington growth. Gov. Durham took a tin bucket and went to the Kleiser sugar camp and got it full of sugar water. I have had all I could drink. It is a fine drink for me. Gov likes it too. (Note this is Governor Crittenden Durham 12 April 1848 - 15 Nov 1911 son of Jesse Younce and Martha Tarkington Durham).
Friday Feb 24 - Clear 42. $.60. Paid 25 for a pound of Arbuckle Coffee 25c for fresh hog ham at 18c per pound. Eva rec'd a couple birthday cards her aniversity (sic) is next Tuesday. She will then be 66 years old. This has been a beautiful day overhead, but a little bit soft under foot. Mary Ellen will be down to see her sister next Tuesday. There was a report going the rounds that Br. TJ Shuey of Seattle was dead. It was not so.
Saturday Feb 25 - Cloudy. 49. $9.25. Paid 25 for a pound of butter, 10c for lunch. I was done work by 11 o'clock but it was near midnight when I was ready to start home. The Crawfordsville Journal today had a notice of the death of TJ Shue (sic) at Seattle on Friday of last week. The wind is high and rain is not far away a little has fallen. Bought good for 2 shirts cost 1.35. My old sweetheart will make them for me. Pd Sam Milligan $5.
Sunday Feb 26 - Cloudy most of the day. 50. I went with my wife to her church service and heard a new beginner, it was his 8th time to address a congregation of church members. He was greatly embarrassed. At the night service his embarrassment had about disappeared and he got along fine for one of his age 21 and experience. Paid 25 c for 6 oranges, 15 for 6 ¾ pounds of cabbage 10 for 6 bananas 10 for a can of syrup for table use. I had a hard time last night to keep on the walk. It was dark.
Monday Feb 27 - Cloudy. 58. The sun shone a little while. $4.35. The items of expenditures ought to occupy this space. I made a mistake, I bought those goods today. We are expecting Mary Ellen and Mrs. Will Goben in from Crawfordsville on the train due here at 10 o'clock. Eva says she would not be surprised to see her sister Miranda Ellis, too. I sent the Record-Herald $4.35 by check and put $5 in bank. Eva will be 66 years old tomorrow. She dressed a real fat hen for tomorrows dinner.
Tuesday Feb 28 -- $.80. Cloudy the ground was covered with a light snow. 29. It all passed off before noon. I put the horse to the buggy and met the morning train at 10 o'clock and got Mary Ellen and Mrs. Wm Goben. She gave my wife a birthday present, a nice little cream pitcher and her sister (Eva) gave her sister a calico dress pattern. Miranda Ellis will be here next Friday. I am requested to meet her at Milligan. 2 ½ miles south of here. Paid Albert Wright a dollar.